December 4, 2014—While Michael Brown’s death was not caught on camera, Eric Garner’s was. Yes, Eric Garner didn’t want to be arrested and wasn’t complying, but he wasn’t acting aggressive or violent. His hands were up. It wasn’t an urgent matter or a situation where the officers had to act quickly. I don’t believe the officers intended to kill him, but when I watched the video it looked like excessive force. It looked unnecessary and unjustified. A grand jury decided not to indict the officer responsible for holding Eric Garner in the chokehold until his death. An indictment is a formal charge, not saying whether or not the officer is guilty or innocent yet.
Here’s the thing. I don’t think Eric Garner should have been stopped in the first place. Why was he stopped? Because of cigarette taxes—a huge pet peeve of mine. The job of police officers is to enforce the laws that the politicians create. You can argue that police officers should not enforce unjust laws, but I think the more reliable solution is to get those bad, unjust laws off the books. Do you agree? Share your thoughts in the comments.